Returning to Memphis after opening for India.Arie last year at The Orpheum, the English duo Floetry will perform at Isaac Hayes' Peabody Place restaurant Tuesday, April 15th, in a refreshing infusion of contemporary R&B into the city's club scene. The duo of Marsha Ambrosius and Natalie Stewart first formed in London as a songwriting team but are now based out of the neo-soul capital of Philadelphia. In recent years they've been at the forefront of the burgeoning genre, penning hits for Jill Scott, Glenn Lewis, Bilal, and even Michael Jackson. The duo stepped out as performers with last year's Dreamworks Records debut, Floetic. Balancing the sung vocals of Ambrosius with the raplike spoken word of Stewart, the result is a smooth neo-soul with a hip-hop tinge.
For something completely different, you could check out the self-described "polyethnic Cajun slamgrass" of Colorado jam-rock goofballs Leftover Salmon, whose hyper-laidback bluegrass-lite sound will be showcased at the New Daisy Theatre Saturday, April 12th. Leftover Salmon's latest record is something of a departure: a collection of covers of Cracker songs, including the likes of "Eurotrash Girl" and "Teen Angst." The record, titled O Cracker, Where Art Thou?, is due in May, though it remains to be seen if they'll break out any of these interpretations at the Daisy.
For a stiffer take on roots sounds, Louisville's My Morning Jacket, whose indie-rock take on the Neil Young aesthetic has drawn tons of praise, will be at Newby's on Tuesday, April 15th, with Chicago's Memphis-connected post-punk band The Detachment Kit bringing their own slanted and enchanted vibe as the opening act.
But there's also plenty of local action on hand this week. Shangri-La Records has a couple of events going this weekend. Caucasion rap sensations Effingham and Wheatstraw will perform at the store at 5 p.m. Friday, April 11th, and Sunday, April 13th, the store will hold its annual Spring Record Swap from 1 to 5 p.m.
Over at the Hi-Tone Café, two of the city's finest rootsy singer-songwriters, John Murry and ex-Pawtucket Andy Grooms, have joined forces for a series of shows, playing each Monday night at the Midtown watering hole. And at Young Avenue Deli, the one and only Reigning Sound will join veteran Lamar Sorrento's Mod Saints and The Break-ups on Saturday, April 12th. -- Chris Herrington